As per the classic Seinfeld scene, Tuesday has no feel, and neither does Milan, as a city. Or at least for me it doesn’t. It definitely does not feel like a style capital, for one. There’s something too in your face about the way people (over)dress, and I myself prefer a bit more grace when it comes to one’s outfit. It’s not an architecturally endowed city either, or at least not when you compare it to the rest of Italy’s relentless majesty. It might be dynamic, but not in the way that sets it apart from any other urban conglomeration of its size.
The subway is a bland affair as well, and I think the only major city that gets away with a pathetic metro network is Rome, but then again, they score pretty high on the above mentioned majesty scale, so all is forgiven. The Milan metro feels like anywhere and nowhere all at once, which is not to be confused with London’s Neverwhere.
The strongest indictment against Milan, of course, is the presence of two of the most obnoxious football teams in the world residing in the same architecturally dubious stadium. Even Madrid has the grace of having one team that is pretty likable. Milan, on the other hand, brings in the heavy artillery. To make the case even worse, one of said teams stands at the source of one of the most soul crushing methods of playing football, the catenaccio, the utter boredom of which is splendidly reflected in the city itself.
Given the above tirade, it was highly unlikely that I would ever visit Milan out of my own volition for any other reason than passing through it to get to Turin- yet my company felt strangely compelled to send me in exile to such vile lands for the ridiculous reason that it has some offices in the industrial wilderness nearby. The whole nuisance happened in February (incidentally, the month of the year which has no feel at all either), and as soon as I returned from Italy, I completely forgot I took any pictures in Milan.
However, I unexpectedly bumped into them the other day as I was doing the end of year sorting (everything about Milan is accidental with me), and I concluded that, as opposed to the city itself, they have a certain feel. I just did not bother much with framing, composition or even focus when I took them, and they somehow capture the disconnection in my relationship to Milan.
They’re also exclusively taken in the dark due to well, February, and my being in the corporate wilderness during the day. And there’s a full moon-strangely enough, I seem to have traveled extensively around full moon and even super moon times this year, I might have an inner werewolf, to go alongside the compulsory inner vampire of every Transylvanian.
On a positive note- there’s good beer to be had in Italy, that most archetypal of wine countries, but they don’t really know what to do with it. They’re particularly oafish when it comes to pouring it, with more than half of it ending up on the bar or unsuspecting patrons. But at least they try- a slogan that could very well apply to the entirety of Milan as well.